Maikel Franco hits go-ahead single in Phils’ win


Sep 8, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco (7) hits a single during the eighth inning of a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citizens Bank Park. The Pirates defeated the Phillies 6-4. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Maikel Franco was placed in the two spot in the Phillies’ lineup Tuesday night and it paid off as his go-ahead single in the seventh inning was the difference in a 4-3 Philadelphia win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Franco doubled in his first at bat for his first career extra-base hit and just his third hit overall.  Chase Utley singled to drive him home for the game’s first run.

Phillies’s starter David Buchanan went six innings, just as he did in his first outing against the Pirates.  The righty allowed four hits and three runs, but only two were earned.  He walked three and struck out five, including Andrew McCutchen twice.

Buchanan’s battery mate, Carlos Ruiz, committed his fifth error of the season.  Ruiz dropped a foul ball off the bat of Gregory Polanco in the second inning, allowing Polanco to continue his at bat and draw a walk.  Polanco’s first-to-third speed was on display as Jordy Mercer promptly doubled him in, resulting in Buchanan’s unearned run and a 1-1 tie.

Pirate’s catcher Russell Martin saw just nine pitches in the game, but with that he went 2-for-4.  His third inning double plated a pair to give Pittsburgh a 3-2 lead.

Freddy Galvis made good use of his time at shortstop in place of the injured Jimmy Rollins, going 3-for-3 and scoring three runs. Galvis doubled in the second inning as Buchanan knocked him in for his second RBI of the season, giving the Phillies a short-lived 2-1 lead that was broken up by Martin’s double.

In the fifth Galvis blasted his second home run of the season to tie the game.  He was also the winning run as he was driven in by Maikel Franco in the seventh.

Franco is now 4-for-19 to start his career and has scored three runs while striking out twice in his first five games with the Phillies.

Justin De Fratus pitched a scoreless inning for the second night in a row to earn his third win of the season.

Ken Giles had a 1-2-3 eighth inning to earn his tenth hold in 2014.

Jonathan Papelbon picked up his 36th save, but gave up an infield hit to Gregory Polanco.  The Phillies’ closer has given up at least one hit in his last three games and eight hits in his last ten innings.